Browns punish Antonio Callaway by making him play


Most teams punish football players by not letting them play football. In Cleveland, playing football apparently is punishment enough.

Browns coach Hue Jackson explained to reporters on Sunday that rookie receiver Antonio Callaway played most of the preseason opener as discipline for his recent citation for marijuana possession.

“Absolutely,” Jackson said regarding whether the extensive playing time was discipline related. “That was the plan. It was. I was trying to make him play the whole game if we could. I did not want him to come out. . . . That was part of the consequence of what he has been through, and he knows it. That is what it was. Either you sit him or make him play. I thought it was better to make him play. Make him play as long as he could. There were a couple of times he kept waving to come out, and we said, ‘No, stay in.’”

Jackson said he liked the fact that Callaway fought through his punishment.

“I did,” Jackson said. “He worked through it. There were times he had his hands — I am sure you saw it — he had his hands on his head like this, and he was ready to go to the sideline. We said, ‘[No], you are back in there.’ He fought through it, came out the other side of it and made some plays. That was good.”

It’s strange, to say the least, that a coach who summarily shut down the idea of not giving players days off in order to keep them healthy would subject a key rookie to injury by keeping him in a preseason game when he’s trying to tap out. They got lucky that Callaway emerged from the experience healthy.

30 responses to “Browns punish Antonio Callaway by making him play

  1. This is the sort of punitive thing that coaches used to do and were lucky didn’t end up badly. We are not anywhere near U of Maryland territory, but I can’t say this rests well with me. Jackson is rapidly striving to be fired.

  2. I’ve got no problem with this. It’s just like running laps but you get more experience out of it. They obviously believed him when he said it was left in the car when before it was transported up to him, so why not let him suffer a bit while still getting the game experience he needs? Try running routes for 45 minutes with little rest, sucking air and puking gatorade. He’ll get the point.

  3. I was happy for Browns fans with the improved roster, but Hue did not come off as a particularly intelligent coach or effective leader. Hopefully it was just a bad week due to his brother & mother’s recent passings.

  4. Maybe the Browns will play Tyrod Taylor all season and go winless again. Hue must think that Haslem will give him an extension at 1/47; the stadium will be empty but the Haslems will show that they finally have patience! Who punishes a player by giving him playing time? I mean aside from Jackson who is as clueless as they come. But Browns fans can take heart. Mayfield will eventually get to play meaningful games … after playing meaningless ones in 2018. This is all about Jackson campaigning for Taylor before the draft. Dorsey should soon have enough proof to convince even the Haslems that it’s time for clueless Hue to go.

  5. Dude hasnt played a single down of football in 2yrs. This is more of a punishment than most seem to think. As another pointed out you try running routes for an entire game without rest, after not playing at all in 2 yrs. 80% of the players arent in peak shape yet, hence why they dont play much. Yet you expect a rookie who hasnt played in years to be in peak shape to play the entire game. So yeah it was definitely a punishment.

  6. I understand teaching a player accountability for messing up. The problem is that it should be kept in-house and not made public. I suppose keeping things on the down low is hard to do with Hard Knocks filming everything though…

  7. I guess he should have made sure he was physically ok to keep him in but honestly this is definitely more punishment. And in today’s world we need a bit more of it. That’s why we now have in school suspensions instead of letting kids get a day off. I can bet he’s thinking twice about pot now way more than he would if he sat on a bench for 3 hours. And I bet he sat for more than three hours the next day lol. If he gets this kids life straight now, all the more power to him…it’s not just about football. His actual coaching ability aside, I do t think this is that terrible.

  8. Sounds like Hue trolled the reporter. Myself, I have no problem with work not punishing someone for issues that the law has dealt with. If the court fines him or makes him do time or service, that’s that. That goes for any of us. I couldn’t imagine getting my pay docked because I got a parking ticket.

  9. “It’s strange, to say the least, that a coach who summarily shut down the idea of not giving players days off in order to keep them healthy would subject a key rookie to injury by keeping him in a preseason game when he’s trying to tap out. They got lucky that Callaway emerged from the experience healthy.”.

    I think Hue is just flying by the seat of his pants, at least from what I’ve heard from him since he became a HC, and from what I saw on Hard Knocks (which is obviously a very small sample size).

    I just haven’t seen anything from him that you can point to and say “he has a clear, concise plan”. It kind of looks like he is just trying stuff in hopes it works.

    He also kind of reminded me (on Hard Knocks) of Rex Ryan a bit, as far as all the gimmicky stuff. For ex- the literal “earning your stripes” where he peeled the stripes off every Cleveland players helmets. Or where he jumped in the lake and said “the losing is cleansed. Now we can start winning!” (like that has anything to do with anything).Or where he was talking to the players about how they should all be playing to win the Super Bowl this year (classic Rex).

    I got the impression from Hue that he thinks that if he can just motivate the guys to play hard enough, they will win. I got that same impression from Rex.

    I just didn’t see the detailed approach from Hue, which IMO is something very important for a head coach to do. The best coaches in the NFL are all very detail oriented.

    Even during practice, every time they showed Hue he was just standing around observing or talking with players/coaches. I didn’t see him out there correcting or teaching the small details and techniques. I didn’t see any Browns coaches doing that, but maybe they just didn’t show it. I am sure it’s happening, but I’m not sure on what level.

    What makes me wonder more is that when Corey Coleman got to Buffalo he said he was blown away by how detailed the coaches are, and how they are out there correcting things you do after every play. He made it sound like that just didn’t happen in Cleveland.

  10. I’m truly impressed with Hue Jackson. I can’t think of a single other coach in the history of the NFL that comes up with so many different ways to individually embarrass himself and the organization.

  11. Get this dino coach out of their, he possessed Marijuana, that is legal is all sorts of states. Leave grey area stuff outside of the game, out of the game.

  12. I watched episode one of Hard Knocks. Jackson’s coaching staff don’t seem to agree with him about his treatment of players. Hard to win when the head coach can’t hire a staff who agree with the way he treats player personnel. All that (unseen) murmuring between coaches when he’s out of the room is not good for a team.

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